Proceed to the Route

On a recent trip to Nashville, I got lost while driving back to my hotel. I missed a turn and rather than recalculating a new route, the GPS simply said “proceed to the route”. I tried to correct my mistake, but failed. For nearly 20 minutes I tried and failed, all the while hearing the GPS tell me to proceed to the route.

Finally, I pulled over to think. (If you’re going to have an epiphany, the parking lot of the YMCA in Nashville is as good a place as any, I guess.)

I knew where I was (the YMCA), I knew where I had to go (Rosa L. Parks Blvd) and I had the tools I needed to get there (a GPS). So why wasn’t it working?

The problem was with me; or rather, with my lack of knowledge of Nashville roads and experience navigating them. I got out of the car, surveyed the streets and discovered another route to Rosa L. Parks Blvd. This time, the way was clear and when I turned onto 10th Cir N, Google Maps recalculated directions.

Whether we’re driving a car or building a writing career, knowing where we need to go and getting there can be two very different things. It’s ok to stop, re-evaluate what we’re doing, and plot a new course. Once we do, we can proceed to the route.

About the author 

Valerie Francis

Valerie Francis is a bestselling author, literary editor, and podcaster with a passion for stories by, for and about women.

Each month, Valerie recommends books from literature’s best female authors. Selections come from every genre because women write, and read, in every genre. The Women’s Fiction category offers up some terrific novels, but these days there’s a strong female presence in thriller, horror, crime, and other genres traditionally dominated by male writers. No matter what the publishing companies may think, in the 21st Century, Women’s Fiction is whatever we want it to be.

stories for women, by women, and about women